Meet Tim Capazzi - Nontraditional student, father and future teacher. He was working in financial services and doing volunteer work at his son’s school when the lightbulb went on. He looked around, saw no male teachers at that particular elementary school, and he decided this might be the career path for him.
Tim transferred from Trident Technical College and was drawn to the College because its elementary education program is so highly regarded. Alumni had glowing things to say and he discovered that class sizes are small, which meant he would have access to faculty who are so supportive. And, he learned, there’s a real sense of camaraderie within the program. “I knew that teachers often work collaboratively,” he says, “so that seemed like good preparation for this career.”
Two courses in particular have been significant for Tim. One was Classroom Management Techniques. “We learned a lot of hands-on techniques that have been very helpful during my student teaching,” he says. The other was a course on diverse learners. “Not all students learn in the same fashion, so you need to tailor your methodology accordingly. In this class, we learned how to differentiate our lesson plans based on the types of students we’d be working with.”
A formative experience for Tim was the observation classes that lead to clinical practice. “Being in classrooms with young students really locks in what you’ve learned in the classroom,” he says. “Until you’re actually there, you can’t imagine what it’s like.”
For Tim, the opportunity to work with young children is key. “The younger they are, the more instrumental you can be in their lives. Once they get to a certain point, either they like school or they don’t, and if they don’t, it’s harder to reach them. And I really want to instill in them a love of education and a love of learning.“ Now, he’s getting the best preparation possible for that role.
The Elementary Education Program at the College of Charleston has become one of the most respected in the Southeast. With a proven, effective structure and the combined expertise of more than 30 professors, the program produces well-prepared graduates who are actively recruited.
❱❱ Our students engage in four semesters of invaluable, hands-on fieldwork in elementary classrooms in diverse settings.
❱❱ Our faculty and administrators have cultivated strong partnerships with local elementary schools, deepening the opportunities for our students.
❱❱ Our program is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).